Wednesday, December 12, 2018

10 Historical Conversation Starters and Icebreakers.

Historical Conversation Starters and Icebreakers:
One must reply in detail.
Please, answer anyway you choose.

1. Abraham Lincoln: Hero, Genius, or Tyrant?
2. Thomas Jefferson: Brilliant and enlightened champion of freedom or anti-military coward only concerned with his sex life and the plantations?
3. Henry Kissinger: Hero or War Criminal?
4. Chairman Mao Zedong: Horrible Mass-Murderer or CIA Plant?
5. The invention of the firearm: Evil Weapon or Life-saving tool?
6. What is the true definition of civilization?
7. What race were the ancient Egyptians?
8. What was the worst event in human history?
9. What was the greatest accomplishment of any civilization?
10. What event in human history changed the course of human development the most?

41 New Icebreaker Questions:

A new list of icebreaker questions:
Conversation Starters.
Or just breaking the ice.


1. What is the most used app on your phone?
2. Who do you text message the most?
3. What subject do you spend the most time talking about?
4. What is the longest you've gone without speaking to a member of  your family?
5. Where is the last place you visited walking to only by foot?
6. What is one place you visited that left you feeling disappointed?
7. What is one place you visited that left you feeling pleasantly surprised?
8. When was the last time you had a daydream?
9. What is the most creative thing you do?
10. When you read fiction do you imagine how you could have made the story better?
11. What is the last book you read?
12. What is the last book you read without skipping anything?
13. Which is more entertaining: a novel or a non-fiction book? (and why?)
14. You have to choose one: would you rather spend a week visiting the arctic or the antarctic, which one would you choose and why?
15. Who was your best friend growing up?
16. Who was one classmate from your past that you did not get along with?
17. What is your definition of success?
18. What is your definition of love?
19. Which musical artist (band/solo performer/ensemble etc.) do you spend the most time listening to?
20. Do you care when people end sentences in prepositions?
21. What do you think about Sigmund Freud?
22. When was the last time you had a debate on a major academic topic with someone?
23. What was the name of  your first grade teacher?
24. Which form of candy did you like to eat when you were a kid?
25. You have to choose one: would you rather spend a week in a Mountain Cabin isolated from all humanity or a week on an ocean-faring boat-like vessel isolated from all humanity?
26. Which is more treacherous, the rain-forest or the desert?
27. How do you feel about love poetry?
28. If you created a new website, what would it be about?
29. What are your thoughts on Podcasting?
30. What was the last movie you watched?
31. Where did you watch it, and was anyone watching it with you?
32. Who is the most knowledgeable person in the world?
33. What is one song you always sing to yourself?
34. Is it normal to shower three times a day, why or why not?
35. Is it better to brush your teeth in the morning or at night? and why?
36. What is the most bizarre thought you've ever had that you are willing to admit in public?
37. Do you remember your dreams?
38. If so, what is the best dream you have ever had?
39. If you do not remember your dreams, what is one you wish you had?
40. What would you do if you did not own a smartphone?
41. If you got a free scholarship to go back to any school, any program, any subject, any time, full-paid, where would you study?


Tuesday, December 11, 2018

35 Conversation Starters and Challenge Questions about Good and Evil

Conversation Starters and Challenge Questions about Good and Evil

There are many conversations that have taken place about the nature of ethics, morality, and the nature of Good and Evil themselves. Here is a list that will hopefully lead to constructive debates and discussions on the issues.

These questions are meant to be challenged and explored. They do not come from the omniscient or a place of absolute knowledge. They are waiting for  your answers.


1. What is the difference between Morality and Ethics?
2. How do you define Sin?
3. How do you define Love?
4. Was morality created by humans or by another metaphysical source? (Why/why not?)
5. Is Morality relative? why or why not?
6. Is there a single definition of goodness that most major religions strive toward?
7. Do secularists have belief systems?
8. If someone asks the question, can we have....without God? Are they trying to play the part of God?
9. How do you define Mysticism?
10. Does the devil exist?
11. How does one obtain certainty that something exists or does not exist?
12. Can one use rules of logic to explain good and evil? (why or why not?)
13. Is "Peace" a good thing? Why or why not?
14. Should we all try to become Utopians? (why or why not?)
15. Should one evangelize one's own belief system? (why or why not?)
16. What is an example of a time when someone should employ civil disobedience? (e.g.If you believe that a law is morally wrong, it should not be followed).
17. Are there bad people in the world?
18. If possible, what does it take for someone to be good?
19. Is cruelty something that is universally condemned? Why or why not?
20. How do you respond to the following statement, "drinking battery acid corrodes your organs and destroys your body. Therefore, drinking battery acid is bad for you. Thus, we have proven the existence of good and bad as a solid fact."
21. Even if someone is not spiritual, should someone still follow the ten commandments in their daily life because society would function better that way?
22. Is happiness the end goal of all belief systems? (why or why not?)
23. How do you respond to the following statement: "There is no good and evil. There is no right and wrong. There might be things in life that I choose not to do, but I cannot say that they are evil. I can only say that I want or do not want something."
24. Is romantic love only emotions, attachment, and shared experiences? Why or why not?
25. Do men and women view the concept of "trust" differently? (Why or why not?)
26. Should those who are ignorant receive different standards than those who should know better? Why or why not?
27. If someone believes in Good and Evil, can they demonstrate it using empiricism?
28. Are things such as child abuse, torture, pedophilia, the holocaust, and the September 11th attacks instantly wrong?
29. What is the difference between moral, immoral, and amoral?
30. Can science provide absolute certainty as to why humans refer to things as Good and Evil?
31. True or False: "Destructive people will do destructive things no matter what influence they have received in life." Why or why not?
32. Is "peace" a realistic goal for humanity? Why or why not?
33. Is the current worldly definition of evil synonymous with "destruction without warrant?" Why or why not?
34. How do you respond to the following statement: "There are 100 people in the city. 99 of the residents want person #100 executed. Person #100 has not committed any crimes of any kind. The 99 other residents have simply chosen that they want to execute person #100 because they no longer like person #100, and killing this person will improve the collective happiness of their society and allow it to function better"  ? Do you agree why or why not?
35. If not love, then what?


Monday, December 10, 2018

51 Conversation Starters and Icebreaker Questions

A list of starter questions to assist with conversations, icebreakers, or just for fun:

Many people do not have favorites, so frequency is another way to pose the question.

Icebreaker Questions:

1. What color do you wear the most?
2. When you were younger, what color was your first backpack?
3. What is your birthstone?
4. When you imagine a beautiful piece of jewelry, what does it look like? 
5. What is more beautiful? Gold or Platinum? 
6. Which would you rather do with a friend: stay at home and watch a movie or go out for  a restaurant for pizza?
7. Are all humans created equal? 
8. Which TV show do you watch the most?
9. What is one television network or streaming site/service that you recommend to other people?
10. What was the last movie you watched?
11. How did you feel about the last movie you watched? 
12. Where was one memorable vacation you had once?
13. What was a movie you watched that made you feel disappointed?
14. What was one vacation you had that was disappointing?
15. If you had up $65,000 to spend, but had to spend it on a new car in one single purchase/transaction and wouldn't get the remainder of the funds you didn't spend, which car would you buy? 
16. Where is a part of the world you want to know more about?
17. What new language do you want to study in the future? 
18. What was the last book you read? 
19. Do you read more fiction or non-fiction?
20. Do you like documentaries? Why / why not? 

Deep Thought Icebreaker Questions:

21. Do you believe in God? 
22. What are 3 commonalities that all humans share? 
23. How does the definition of love differ from culture to culture?
24. How do you know if you like or love something?
25. Is hatred immoral? Why or why not?
26. Are premarital relations morally right or wrong? 
27. Were there things in the past that were morally wrong that are now considered moral because of the development of humanity? (Why?  / Why not?)
28. What's the difference between prayer and superstition?
29. Do meditation and prayer have the same practical function? 
30. What is the origin of  your values?
31. How do you define "peace?"
32. Are peace and love the ultimate and most pure values for humanity? Why?/Why not?
33. Is happiness the end goal of philosophy?
34. Would you rather be rich and unhappy or poor and happy?
35. Is morality relative?
36. What is your definition of the word "truth?"
37. How do you know for certain that someone loves you? 
38. Does science have limitations? If yes, what are they? If no, why not?
39. Is science greater than philosophy? Why/why not?
40. Is it possible for science to explain all common beliefs of morality? Why? Why not?

Super Deep Thought Icebreaker Questions:

41. If a tree falls in the woods, and no one is around to hear it, do the animals hear the sound?
42. In terms of quantum physics, would the planets exist if no humans were present in our solar system?
43. Are non-familial relations existential and proven by science? (Non-familial defined as He is my best friend or She is like a sister to me.etc.)
44. What is the difference between a fact and truth?
45. (Is the following statement true or false?) If the truth can change from person to person, then the fact that the truth can change from person to person becomes the constant truth; then there must be one truth that is always constant. 
46. If you drank from the fountain of youth, how do you imagine you would feel in 20 years?
47. What is the difference between magic and supernatural? 
48. What is the difference between metaphysics and ontology? 
49. Can ideas exist without the human brain? Why or why not?
50. Are standards of human decency universal? Why or why not? 
51. Can you prove love as a factual claim? 


Wednesday, August 8, 2018

For Those Who Dream of Autumn


-For Those Who Dream of Autumn 

As the days move toward the end of August, there is a certain lust for September's air. The Summer will come to a close. The heat of Summer can be a prison, and the changes in Autumn's leaves and the overwhelming smell of pumpkin can be a gift. Autumn is a comfort, and as the leaves fall one can only meditate on the value of these months until the late sunrises of Winter shall come.

Sometimes it's enjoyable to dream about the older times; the days when a harvest was the key to the community and to most of civilization. As the fruit falls from the tree, and the pumpkins grow in the patch, the celebration of nature's cadeaux was once a miracle, and let us do our best not to take it for granted.

The warmth of hot apple cider with a touch of cinnamon. The smell of apples baking in the oven and roasting pumpkin seeds. The orange, red, yellow and light brown fill the trees, but it is always overjoying to find a fall tree decked out in all red leaves. As the leaves fall to the Earth they spread their scent like aroma therapy. The morning air in October is crisp and inviting. Walking outside is welcome at any time of day. The dawn rises not too early and not too late.

In our older times, they entertained the notion that at the end of October the spirits would run through the air at night, and as November came in all of them would settle...it is easy to see why as the bright colors of Autumn fill the trees. The nights begin to turn cold, and once November has arrived, the scent of Autumn has left the air, and Winter is on the mind of us all.



Tuesday, August 7, 2018

One Night in Mid-Summer: A Poem

One Night in Mid-Summer: A Poem

The rain came once, and the air was fresh.
The night began to fall, and he didn't want to leave the park.
The winds began to blow.
But they were the warm winds of Summer, and...
He felt them like nature's kiss.
Or perhaps a Christmas in July Present for the Early morning.
It was a chance to enjoy a single moment in the mid-Summer heat.
It was a chance to contemplate about the next ice cream treat.
The days turn into one, and the Summer becomes a blur.
No sound. No Sight. No Motion.
Yet he would give anything to be that ship upon the ocean.
Oh, how the desires have changed.
Each day, there is one less thing to want,
and Each day there is one less thing to need.
Moving onward from the mid-Summer heat,
One Day he will walk the Forest Floor in his elder years.
One Day he will gaze upon the sunlight peeking through the canopy.
The worms and the insects will roam the floor.
The sound of birds hidden behind the branches and leaves...
Will become a daily exercise.
At that moment, the elder years will come to an end.
Why does one wait until eternity?
For what does one have to wait for?
Why doesn't the cold hand of the old tyrant reach down and take us now?
The process of turning old and cold has nothing bold.
There is no glory in one's decay,
and there is no joy in one's demise.
It is now time to forge a duty. To create and to disperse.
To share a message with the world.
One must believe.
One must work.
If faith without works is dead, so where does one choose to live?
How does one make the forest feel far?
How does one find meaning in each footstep toward the city?
Every meal should be honored.
Every rainstorm with clothing should be treasured.
For there are those who lack even the most essential.
There are those who never even smile when they feel the rain.
Life is about sharing. Life is about generosity.
Yet intentions only take us so far.
Kind feelings and warm emotions are strong,
But they are not strong enough to cure the hungry.
There comes a point.
There comes a line.
One must create solutions.
If a problem exists, it is only waiting for its solution.
If a problem persists, try looking at in the other way.
Thanks to Gottfried Leibniz and James and the Giant Peach.
Let us learn to love outer space and have no fear of rhinos.

The clouds roll onward.
The summer sky has turned to darkness.
The heat swells across the landscapes.
Even in the dark of night, there is not a single cooling moment.
Passion and excitement fill one for three more months.
Come winter, we all know we won't leave the house.
We spend the summers dreaming and the winters waiting.
Where is the solution?
Where is the answer to all the problems?
One will only know if the equation is balanced.
One will only know if the horizon is the ending point.
It is not enough to try.
It is not enough to walk toward the horizon.
Sometimes one must run.
Sometimes one must change the perspective.
Sometimes one must extrapolate the knowledge from
A lifetime of school classrooms.
Sometimes must divest
The knowledge of yesteryear.
Sometimes one must learn to walk and run with no fear.

The winds rage onward.
The storm comes inward.
The dark clouds block the moonlight.
The stars were long taken from us for the time.
The summer night has its beauty.
The summer night has its imperfections.
Yet with each passing day,
There is one less chance for success and glory.
There is one less chance for aid and comfort.
There is one less chance to help.
Thousands leave the Earth each day from starvation.
Every time one blinks a person somewhere on Earth passes.
The present is before us, and one does not have time to hesitate.
When the dawn rises, let us go.

Saturday, August 4, 2018

The Invitation to Dreamland.

What comes to mind when you hear the word "dreams" ? Perhaps, there is an image with a dark blue or even purple background. On the background there are many stars symbolizing the night. Maybe you can see yourself dancing among the stars. Then, you can take a rest on the moon and use it as a banana chair.
Macau

Close your eyes for a moment.
Walk on the stars.
Sit on the moon.

In our world, the moon and the stars are far apart, but in the dreamworld they are like other sides of the pond.

Dreams do not have limits, nor are they only at night. If dreams have no limits, they can reach an infinite point. Even if you cannot count to infinity, it is still moving onward in dreamland.

Dreams of the night or daydreams both lead us toward higher standards in life. They bring us closer to both our imagination and self-reflection. There are those who try to dig deeply into what our dreams mean, but before one interprets the significance of seeing a certain object while we sleep...let us first marvel at its beauty.

Where would the world be without dreams? Would we toil away each day and then drop into the darkness of night without seeing anything? Would we spend each waking hour without a concern for the future or even reflecting on how the past could be?

A world without dreams is bleak and bland.

Close your eyes once more when you conclude this short note.
This time there is no purple or blue. There are no stars or moon. There is only the chance for you to create your world. What do you see on your own infinite landscape?

What color are the surroundings? What magic shall be created? Who is there for you to love?
The power that is within your dream is greater than anything in the material world.

In a dream, creativity turns to magic, and all the wizardry you can muster is within your grasp.
Create. Compose. Compile. Exert. Extrapolate, and explore. Let the colors fly. Bend the boundaries and the fundamentals of the universe. Challenge the laws of physics and the course of nature, for you are the creator, and for a single moment every day.......you have powers.

See you in Dreamland.